Everything in life tells us “You earn what you get.”
You work. You get a paycheck.
You break the law. You pay the penalty for the crime.
You study. You make good grades. You slack off. You fail.
You workout. You get in shape.
You reap what you sow.
But the grace-way is another way. It’s completely other.
It stands out because it goes against the grain of our you-get-what-you-earn world. The Bible calls God’s grace on the cross foolishness to the world.
How can we be ministers of such foolishness through social media? So many posts from Christians and Christian groups condemn behaviors. Many posts from Christians and Christian organizations hail good works as the mark of success. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying we shouldn’t avoid bad behaviors and shouldn’t strive to do good works, personally. What I am saying is that when we do and don’t do these, it should be on the foundation of crazy, stupid over-the top grace. The message that should shine through ought to stun the world because it shakes us out of the you-get-what-you-earn system.
What would happen if we gave freely to those who didn’t earn it?
What would happen if when we interacted with someone who was clearly in the wrong, we took a stand on the platform of compassion?
I’ll tell you what would happen. We’d be reflecting the grace that has been shown to us. Some will oppose the message because the gospel isn’t easy to accept. But we’d certainly take a step toward taking off the robe of hypocrisy we are so often accused of wearing. Speaking and living in grace requires a different level of authenticity. Figures and leaders in the world put out an authenticity that is acclaimed by people. It tells the world, “I am who am whether YOU like it or not. And I’m okay with that.” The authenticity of grace takes it much further. “In myself, I am who I am, flawed. I have received even though I don’t deserve. In grace, I am who God says I am. Somehow He has forgotten all my failures and flaws. This freedom bubbles up and overflows. I hope you are able to taste and see for yourself.”
Crazy, stupid over-the-top grace in social media looks unintelligent to the world. It should cause a double-take. But for the Christian, extending that type of grace to others should be the norm in light of the grace that has been given to us.
So, dole it out. Who cares if they think you’re foolish? He who has been forgiven much loves much. And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?